1. ITV Report

What's caused our unusual weather today?

A red sun this afternoon over Teesside. Photo: ITV News Tyne Tees
The sky was pink over Gateshead. Credit: ITV News Tyne Tees
The early afternoon skies were unusually dark in Gateshead. Credit: ITV News Tyne Tees
Eerie sunrise over Byker. Credit: David Whinham
The sky over Thornaby early in the afternoon. Credit: Chrissy Howells

While some parts of the country are braced for a battering from Storm Ophelia, in many areas of our region, if you looked skywards earlier today - there was a very eerie orange glow.

Our camera crews have been capturing the almost apocalyptic skies.

Experts say the red sun is owing to winds picking up dust from the Sahara.

This dust is then reflected and refracted in longer wavelengths, giving a red appearance to the sky.

The approach of the storm has also brought low, thick clouds, which at times blocked out sunlight and made the skies unusually dark early in the afternoon.